Computers have been a staple in everyday life for over two decades now. Likewise, video games and online games are nothing new to most people. These technologies are brand new in the broader scope of human history, though. They provide immersive experiences and distraction from daily obligations. Unfortunately, computer gaming addiction is something that thousands upon thousands of people deal with each day.

What is a computer gaming addiction?

These days, computer gaming addiction comes in various forms. Various types of online games are available to players. This includes Flash-based games, online multiplayer games, and so many others. For each game, players can escape into a different world for entertainment and rewards. Games reward players and make them feel validated with each accomplishment. A given game provides a distraction from reality.

It’s not surprising that people enjoy such games. Individual players progress through games, and nothing beats feelings of accomplishment. Addiction arises from enjoying these rewards too much or using games as a substitute for real world interactions. Then again, online casino games provide a more traditional type of addiction. A player can bet real money, win real money, and then lose real money – all within seconds.

An addiction doesn’t arise with frequent playtime, though. Millions of people play hours upon hours of video games each week. For an addiction to occur, various things need to apply to a particular player. If a gaming habit adversely affects a player’s real world obligations, then an addiction could exist. The same applies for gaming that hurts a person’s relationships with others. Other criteria could be applied, too.

The Consequences Of These Addictions

Individuals with a computer gaming addiction can face numerous consequences. Computer games often cost money to play, and some even have subscription fees. In this situation, players could spend thousands of dollars fueling their playtime. Financial devastation is a common result of gaming addictions. Strained personal relationships, failing grades in school, and workplace discipline are all possibilities.

Gaming addictions affect each person differently. It’s impossible to judge what will happen before an addiction develops. Sometimes, addicts are more than capable at hiding their condition from friends and family members. A breaking point often arises sooner or later. One addict might waste rent money on a game’s subscription fees. On the other hand, another addict could lose friends from obsessive playing habits.

How to Combat This Particular Addiction

Like most activities, online computer gaming is best performed in moderation. Addicts have little self-control over their impulses to play. Their computers should be placed in common areas in the home to deter endless gaming sessions. In some cases, a computer could be removed from the premises altogether. Various treatment options are available, but no addiction is ever simple to treat, especially gaming addictions.

If a gaming addiction is suspected, then friends or family members need to intervene. Advanced addictions here can have the same effects as drug addictions after all. Typically, professional treatment isn’t necessary for gaming addictions, but it’s not unheard of for extreme cases. Frequent playtime doesn’t always indicate a gaming addiction, but behavioral changes with increased playtime is another story.